By Denise Richardson Staff Writer
The Daily Star
---- — Oneonta soon will have three newly trained police officers on patrol since the hiring of a third candidate this week, officials said.
The Oneonta Common Council on Tuesday night hired Scott Sheldon effective Oct. 2 at the $37,000 starting pay for patrol officers.
Sheldon is attending the Otsego County Law Enforcement Academy and soon will join Anthony Capristo and David Schulte, two recruits in training with the Oneonta Police Department, city Lt. Douglas Brenner said. The local field training after a recruit completes academy requirements lasts between eight and 12 weeks, after which an officer may patrol solo, he said.
The Oneonta Police Department started this fall with 12 patrol officers, and the recently hired and trained officers will increase patrol ranks to 15, Brenner said. The department has two unfilled patrol positions and probably will wait until results are available from the November test for police officers to identify candidates, he said.
The department, which is authorized for 27 positions, has three detectives, five sergeants, a lieutenant and a chief in addition to the patrol officers.
Last year, staffing in the police department, which previously was authorized for 28 positions, became an issue as the Common Council worked on the 2013 budget. The council cut one authorized position, and a subsequently formed task force continues its work to look at staffing levels and other issues.
In other business at City Hall on Tuesday night, the Common Council:
• Authorized the mayor to sign the health insurance renewal proposal from Excellus for 2014.
• Confirmed the appointment of Denise Burns to the position of custodian at a base salary of $27,193, effective. Oct. 2.
• Created the position of deputy city clerk in the City Clerk’s Office.
• Confirmed a provisional appointment of Nancy Powell to the position of deputy city clerk at a base salary of $31,500 effective Oct 2.
• Appropriated $29,967 to pave parking lanes on Main Street between Chestnut and Elm streets.
• Authorized the mayor to transfer a portion of a Blodgett Drive, a discontinued street, to developer Hillside Commons LLC by quitclaim deed and in consideration of $1.
Oneonta Mayor Dick Miller said he would sign into law an ordinance that restricts peddlers to conducting business between 8 p.m. and 9 a.m. and five local laws that provide tax incentives for rehabilitation or development of some residential and other properties.